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ABC World News With Diane Sawyer

News/Business. Diane Sawyer. The latest world and national news. New. (CC)

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Diane 12, North Carolina 7, Advair 5, Copd 5, Clinton 4, Us 3, Los Angeles 3, Steve 3, Steve Osunsami 3, Virginia 2, Massachusetts 2, Delaware 2, Abc News 2, Bp 2, Abc 2, Dr. Scholl 2, Arizona 2, Jake Tapper 2, Purina 2, Sam 2,
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  ABC    ABC World News With Diane Sawyer    News/Business. Diane Sawyer. The  
   latest world and national news. New. (CC)  

    September 2, 2010
    6:30 - 7:00pm EDT  

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to tonight on "world news," hurricane earl now starting to come ashore, already, 15-foot waves, people streaming out of north carolina. and people in cape cod bracing for impact. and, we have another explosion in the gulf, an oil platform catches fire. 13 workers hurled into the water. they survived, but how did it happen again? rescue. we learn how sharp shooters secretly watched the discovery channel gunman and took him down without killing hostages or setting off explosives. a new fight over grading your child's teacher, and making those grades public. do you want to know? does it help? and speaking of teachers, some of them had a wish list. and an angel swooped in. good evening. it is happening right now.
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the roar of hurricane earl along the atlantic coast. this is video from a plane flying inside the eye of the storm. hurricane force winds radiating out 100 miles in every direction. the storm itself almost the length of florida. we have reports from up and down the coast tonight, and from the national hurricane center. so, let's begin with steve osunsami, who is in nags head, north carolina. steve? >> reporter: diane, this storm is still 400 miles wide. it's a very large storm. it has forced the evacuation of more than 100,000 people. we're very concerned about the storm surge. already, the waves have overtaken the beach here and we've been forced to move. we've been watching this storm closely on radar all day today, studying it. eyeing that well-defined eye, as it inches towards the north carolina coast. tonight, we expect it to pass within 70 miles of this point, just about every resident we talked with today was preparing
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for the worst. these are the long-time residents who have decided to ride out the storm. and today, they were stressing out. >> we're pretty scared. we're doing what we can to make sure we're fine. >> god is truly in control of this. >> never know. what's going to happen. >> if you leave, you know, and something bad did happen you're not going to be able to get back. >> reporter: they're worried about flooding and what happens when they lose power. >> another thing of milk downstairs. marinating some chicken. >> reporter: pam and mike bought food to last them three days and now have everything they need. >> batteries, flashlights and family. >> reporter: lea says her husband usually refuses to put up storm shutters. but this year, he listened. >> i've been here 25 years. this is pretty bad. this is not good. >> reporter: we rode into the sky and took pictures from above. earl is one of the strongest storms to ever threaten the
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eastern shoreline with a well-defined eye and devastating winds that reach out hundreds of miles. late today, north carolina's governor told residents it's not too late to leave. >> i would urge you to do what you think is best for your family, and i personally believe that you'd rather be safe than sorry. >> reporter: but they must leave now. officials here have been warning residents, there will be no shelters open here, and they don't plan on opening any. the closest, diane, will be nearly an hour away. >> and so we see the winds just beginning to whip up with you there, steve. and 100 miles away from you, sam champion is in virginia beach, following the size of the waves, and the flooding that may follow from them. sam? >> reporter: hey, good evening, diane. and yeah, there have been big changes with earl today, but there will be hurricane-force winds on the outer banks of north carolina tonight. that storm is 130 miles away from atlantic beach, north carolina, and just look at the waves. you said at the top of the show,
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15 feet, easy. and we expect they'll be about 20-foot waves there. buoy reports near the eye of the storm have put the waves at 40 feet high. a 3d satellite picture is the best way to show you the changes in earl today. and in the last couple of days. when that storm is well organized and powerful, it has a tight, well-formed eye. now it's difficult to find the eye. the hurricane force winds are still powerful enough to brush that side of the cape, and also, we think cape cod, as well. here's the latest track from the hurricane center, and good news for the mid-atlantic coast, delaware, virginia, even new york city. it is going to pass just by the eastern ledge of long island and the cape. and earl has move into the fast lane, diane. 18 miles an hour, moving to the north now. by the time we get to friday and saturday, it will be going 30 to 35 miles per hour. that means that weather will change just like that. but they won't be in it as long, either. diane? >> sam, thanks to you.
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as you know well, and just indicated, the national hurricane center is reporting that the hurricane, already 400 miles across, is getting bigger, spreading out as we watch. i asked bill reed, the director of the national hurricane center, exactly what that means. so, can you show me what you mean when you mean spreading and what it means in terms of where the winds are going to hit and how strong. does that mean they'll be slightly less ferocious, but in a wider area, wider margin? >> that's a pretty good assessment, actually. the intensity of the storm is expected to weaken as it goes through this feature up here. and the winds will start spreading out into a larger area, and the areas out ahead of it. >> so more area hit by slightly diminished winds. take me up through the northeast for the next 24 hours. what are you looking at right now? >> hurricane conditions possible right on the coast, running parallel the coast, so the coastlines of delaware, new jersey, much of long island could experience the tropical
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storm-force winds and squalls. but the big waves and the beech erosion. the big question will be, too far out in time to rule out that the storm might be a little further east or west of where the center line of that track is. >> so, you're not confident that it will suddenly veer to the west and slam boston area with a direct impact? >> it wouldn't take very much deviation in the direction the senter moves to have a direct impact on the coastline sticks out, mainly southeast massachusetts, the cape, nantucket and martha's vineyard. >> thank you, bill reed. >> my pleasure. >> and in anticipation of all this today, the massachusetts governor declared a state of emergency. again, this could potentially be the worst hurricane faced by this region since 1991, and linsey davis has been on cape cod to tell us how they're preparing. >> reporter: good evening, diane.
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what a beautiful day it's been here today. and that's exactly while officials are essentially saying to people on cape cod, look, if you plan on leaving any time soon, today is the day to do it. the concern is that the weather and water conditions will only continue to go downhill. now, we got a chance to get out on the water today, and that's where you can really start to see earl's effects. normally, we're talking about two to four-foot waves. right now, they're almost twice that and expecting at least 20-foot waves by tomorrow night. many tourists hit the beach today, but they were not allowed to go swimming if they were on the ocean side of the beach. all of the beaches expected to be closed tomorrow. and diane, the fear is that the water will simply be too rough and dangerous. >> okay, linsey, thanks to you. we'll let you know at the end of the broadcast the very latest, at that moment. we turn now, though, to the gulf of mexico. and an incredible sense of deja vu. an oil platform exploded today.
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a blast, a fire. workers thrown into the water. all of this just 200 miles west of that bp explosion last april. and abc's yunji de nies is in louisiana tonight. >> reporter: the fire broke out on the oil and gas platform just after 9:00 this morning, an eerily familiar plume of smoke reaching up into the gulf sky. the 13 crew members plunged into the water to escape the flames, floating together until rescue arrived. one worker was rushed to a hospital. despite occurring just months after the disastrous bp oil well explosion, the platform's owner, mariner energy of houston, was quick to point out the differences. the company says this platform is not used for drilling oil, but to transport it from wells in the water to the shore, using two pipelines. bp's deepwater horizon well spewed more than 200 million gallons of oil from a
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mile down. this platform was operating in shallow water and moves 1,400 barms of oil a day. it was not affected by the white house moratorium on deepwater drilling. there were initial reports of oil sheen on the surface of the water, but the coast guard now says they cannot confirm if any oil actually leaked. the governor says if the situation worsens, diane, they have dispersants ready to go. >> such an eerie echo of what we've been through before. thank you, yunji. and now we know what those sharpshooters did what seemed impossible. discovery workers gathered together today, offering thanks to the police who saved their lives during yesterday's hostage standoff. the last few minutes required nerves of steel, and to describe what happened, here's pierre thomas. >> reporter: as three hostages lay face down on the floor, james lee, the gunman, paced back and forth, carrying what appeared to be a remote control. police feared it would detonate
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explosives strapped to his torso. >> my sense from listening to him and knowing what i know, he had no intention of coming out of there alive. >> reporter: what lee may not have known is that police were watching his every move via a surveillance camera mounted in the lobby. all that information was being rerayed by radio to a 12-man s.w.a.t. team stationed just outside the lobby. lee was armed with two handguns and six improvised explosive devices. four of the bombs were strapped to his body. suddenly, the hostages began to make a move to escape. lee turned and pulled out a handgun. the s.w.a.t. team had to go now. >> we confront him. he turns to my officers. the gun is out, and that's when they shoot him. >> reporter: the s.w.a.t. team marksman had to make a decision, and their aim had to be true. they wanted to kill lee without the bombs exploding. they did. pierre thomas, abc news, washington. and now, the ongoing dream of peace in the middle east. face to face talks today between
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israeli and palestinian leaders resulteded in an agreement to talk, still more. another round of negotiations in egypt, later this month, and a promise to keep talking every other week. but in a sense, this will be the biggest career challenge, one person has ever faced. secretary of state hillary clinton. handed the task of finding victory where so many have failed, and jake tapper is here tonight. he looked at the woman and her mission. jake? >> reporter: that's right, diane. and the secretary of state will lead those negotiations as he takes on an increased leadership role in the day-to-day task of brokering peace that has, for so many of her predecessors, proved illusive. clinton has never before faced a challenge as daunting as this one. >> this is in the national security interests of the united states, but we can not and we will not impose a solution. >> reporter: the world will be
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watching to see what she brings to the table. >> i think she has credibility if that translates into diplomatic skills, i don't know. frankly, she's untested. >> reporter: some see clinton's experience as a politician as an asset, since she will understand not just policy, but politics. how the palestinians and israeli leaders can sell the ne gauche yargss back home. >> got the best type of political mind that knows where you meet the point of principle and knows where you need the subtlety and the compromise. >> reporter: clinton has requested historical background materials, looking at past efforts to see what worked and what did not. and what she may have found is sometimes a ruthless ability to manipulate and bluff is what works. >> you need to be really tough, and probably pretty devious. >> reporter: in 1975, the ford white house, frustrated with israeli intransigents, claimed the u.s. was reassessing its middle east policy. but it was not true. years later, secretary of state henry kissinger admitted it was
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"tee they are. there was nothing to reassess." he had been eager to make the israelis nervous, and eventually the israelis came to the table. >> you need to look at life or the negotiation as if it were a chess board. anticipating what the next move is and probably the next move after that. >> reporter: and secretary clinton's husband, former president bill clinton suggested that will power comes in handy. and he described one very late night negotiation where his, quote, strategy for success had now boiled down to endurance. i was determined to be the last man standing. diane? >> and we know he was. thank you, jake tapper. good to have you here in new york. and now, a question for all of us. is it fair to publish teacher ratings? one gauge of who is good and who is not, a bitter fight today in los angeles about ratings publicized in the "los angeles times." will it make teachers better? here's david wright. >> reporter: it's a simple concept grade teachers based on the performance of their
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students on standardized tests in math and english. but imagine if your job performances were posted on a newspaper website. if you are this third grade teacher, that makes sense. the "times" ranked her among the most effective. must have been a good feeler. >> it was, right, exactly. >> reporter: feelings not shared by elizabeth synder. the "times" ranked her less effective. >> i feel bad about being labeled, about being labeled less effective, because i know it's not true. >> reporter: the newspaper didn't just grade 6,000 teachers based on their students marks. it took seven years of test scores and tracked how much individual students improved each year, under their teacher's supervision. in other words, how much value was added by the teacher. that is a tool now used by hundreds of schools in 21 states. many of them link the teacher's pay to improving student performance. some revoke the ten your, or even fuhred teachers whose students failed to improve.
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the l.a. school district has had this aida for years. but administrators never crunched the numbers before, because they anticipated the teacher's union would object. indeed, the unions do object. they say there's no proof that naming and shaming teachers based on their students will improve education. >> if teachers know this data is going to be published, what teacher is going to say, i want to work with the toughest kids? >> reporter: education secretary arne duncan insists the "times" has done a public service. >> the truth can be hard to swallow, but it can only make us better. >> reporter: parents are bound to agree. >> if my child is getting an "f" and i know he is able to, you know, do "a" work, it has to reflect on the teacher. >> reporter: eager to find some way of quantifying success. david wright, abc news, los angeles. and so many great teachers dip into their own savings these
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days to pay for school supplies for the kids. recently, more than 1,000 california teachers went online, aski ining friends and stranger helping them buy everything from pencils to calculators to the kids. well, a charity decided to give $1.3 million for paying for 12,000 books, over 1,000 computers and cameras and 600 musical instruments, and so much more. still ahead on "world news," loss for words. why a controversial governor said she had a brain freeze. and, still on top. how do the wealthiest members of congress do during the recession? [ male announcer ] the financial headlines can be unsettling. but what if there were a different story? of one financial company that grew stronger through the crisis. when some lost their way, this company led the way.
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have found bodies in the desert, either buried or just lying out there, that have been beheaded. >> reporter: now up for election, last night, the first televised debate, and during her opening remarks. >> we have done everything that we could possibly do. >> reporter: the debate then turns contentious, when one of her opponents asks about the beheadings. >> i call upon you today to say that was a false statement. >> and, you know, terry, i will call you out. >> reporter: she did not address it. and afterward -- >> please answer the question about the headless bodies. do you still believe that? come on, governor. >> okay, thank you all. >> governor -- >> reporter: the night was over. david muir, abc news. and still ahead, a fallen hero, who served a very different role on the battlefield.
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market may have helped. and, now, to afghanistan, and a sad first in the war there. captain dale gets was killed by a bomb on monday, becoming the first army chaplain killed in action since 1970 in vietnam. he was 43 years old, had just deployed in july. he used to be a pastor, back at a baptist church in south dakota, and a member there said he just had a heart for people. captain gets is survived by his wife and three sons. and still ahead, we'll check back in, the latest pictures of hurricane earl, as the east coast prepares for the worst. >> hello? vo: or this. or this. and you definitely couldn't do this. >> play kate's mix. vo: or this. >> temperature 72 degrees. vo: say hello to the new edge with myford touch.™ quite possibly the world's smartest crossover.
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we've made over 120,000 claims payments, more than $375 million. we've committed $20 billion to an independent claims fund to cover lost income until people impacted can get back to work. we'll keep looking for oil, cleaning it up if we find it and restoring the gulf coast. i was born in new orleans. my family still lives here. bp is gonna be here until the oil is gone and the people and businesses are back to normal... until we make this right. [ male announcer ] ever have morning pain slow you down? introducing bayer am, an extra strength pain reliever with alertness aid to fight fatigue.
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so get up and get goin'! with new bayer am. the morning pain reliever. and not we want to check back on our top story. hurricane earl barrelling towards the east coast, striking first tonight in north carolina. let's go to steve osunsami in knacks head. what's the latest, steve? >> reporter: diane, with every passing minute, you can feel the winds strengthen and increase and blow the sand in the air. you can feel it in the air, the sand is so gritty. the air feels gritty because of it. we're watching the seas. the seas are the place to watch tonight, because we're very concerned about storm surge. right now, in a low-lying area.
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been forced to evacuate, from this point, many miles to the south. the concern is, as the storm comes in, but as it moves out the back end of that storm, whipping around, whipping the water from the sound, potentially flooding large portions of the outer banks. diane? >> all right, steve osunsami. and by the way, you can track the storm on abcnews.com through the day and through the night. and, of course, "nightline" will have a wrapup tonight, as well. have a good night, we'll see you tomorrow.
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